Ex-CBI Roundup
June 2006 Issue

By Louis Dezso

A Brief History of the 1304th Engineer Construction Battalion

Pursuant to Paragraph I, General Order No. 4, Army Service Forces, Fourth Service Command, Camp Sutton, North Carolina, the 1304th Engineer General Service Regiment, which had been activated 15 July 1943. was redesignated and reorganized at the 1304th Engineer Construction Battalion, effective 1 February 1944. The authorized strength was 29 officers, two warrant officers and 869 enlisted men.

The Battalion was processed for Overseas Shipment at Camp Patrick Henry, Virginia and on 29 June 1944 set sail for Bombay, India on the USS General A.E. Anderson from the Port of Embarkation at Hampton Roads, Virginia. The ship arrived at Bombay, 7 August 1944 and the Battalion entrained for Ledo, India, arriving at their starting point of future operations on the 16 of August. The highlights of the accomplishments of the Battalion, during their tenure of Overseas Service are as follows.

  1. Constructed 136, bridges of Bailey, H-20 and Pile Trestle type, from Mile Mark 145 to Mile Mark 263 during the period 18 September 1944 and 28 January 1945.
  2. Constructed three Transportation Stations at Myitkyina, Bhamo and Mansi, Burma, consisting of 149 buildings, during the period 31 January and 1 September 1945.
  3. Layed approximately 133 miles of 6-inch pipe, from Shingbwiyang to Namti, Burma, with required Pumping Stations spaced at 20-mile intervals, between the period 13 March and 15 June 1945.
  4. Constructed three Drum Filling Sheds, five Petroleum and Lubricant Warehouse Sheds and other miscellaneous structures in conjunction with all Pipeline Department Construction in the Myitkyina area, during the period 30 May and 1 September 1945.
  5. On 2 September 1945, the Battalion was transferred to Northern Area Command Headquarters at Ledo and took over construction of Miscellaneous Recreational Housing Utilities and Staging Area project, in the Ledo area.

The present assignment of this Battalion, after completion of the movement to the Chabua area from Ledo, on 15 September 1945, is the operation of three Sawmills located at Laika Jan, Dum Dum and Makum Junction, the Maintenance Roads in the Chabua area and other miscellaneous construction.

The Officers and Men of this Battalion are very proud of the accomplishments of certain Enlisted Men who have distinguished themselves and have been awarded the Soldier's Medal for heroism, beyond the call of duty.

The men are as follows: Master Sergeant Walter E. Jaeger, Staff Sergeant Edward Bluma, Technician Fourth Grade Robert O. Raub, Technician Fifth Grade LeRoy Bauer, Technician Fifth Grade John Garcia.

For Meritorious Service rendered during the construction of this Battalion, the following Enlisted Men have been recommended for the Bronze Star Medal:

Master Sergeant Richard Donlon, Master Sergeant Clarence McCutcheon, Master Sergeant George Rumberger, Technical Sergeant Clyde Kalterbaugh.

It is with profound regret that during the period of construction activities of this Battalion, the following Officer and Enlisted Men died in the Service of their country:

Second Lt. Paul R. Bates, Sr., Cpl. Roy J. Smith, T/5 Patrick Deneen, PFC Marlin Meadows, Pvt. Edward Parr.

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